525: Love and Dead Rats

When I was in third grade I read The Hundred Dresses and decided for my book project to draw 100 women wearing dresses. I told my teacher who absently agreed, I told my parents who smiled indulgently and started in on it. I guess none of the grown-ups really believed that I'd do it and had no idea that every evening I sat down and drew 10 women in dresses. I drew red heads, blondes, brunettes, women of African descent, Asian, European...women in frilly dresses, women in 80's-tastic dresses, women in futuristic dresses with wildly colored hair. When I thought I was going to burn out, my sisters stepped in and helped me with the last few. Being as I was bad at counting, still am, I ended up drawing more like 107 dresses. When I presented the project to my teacher, her jaw dropped, she hadn't believed I do it. She was so impressed it ended up hanging in the main stair well of the school for a month. My parents were both shocked and extremely proud. I remember being a bit puzzled. I said I'd do it and no one had seemed to care then, why all the fuss now? It never occurred to me that they wouldn't believe that I'd do it. Looking back on it, I guess it's a great example of how I'm internally, not praise motived. My husband is the same way and I have to wonder if it's genetic as our son is already exhibiting similar traits. He's just 4 months old and he spends copious amounts of time trying his hardest to crawl. There's no toy out of reach, there's no location to get to, we don't praise him especially for it, all his needs are met readily, but something in him just says that this is something he wants to do. Honestly, that more than his accomplishments makes me proud, that he's clearly doing it for him, not a gold star.